Stocks Put Out of Misery by Closing Bell

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stocks on Friday extended losses spurred by Thursday's panicked selloff, easily making it the worst trading week of the year.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average had the ninth-worst weekly performance in its history, losing 5.7%. It shed 140 points, or 1.3%, during the session to close at 10,380. The S&P 500 finished the session down by 17 points, or 1.5%, at 1111 and was 6.4% lower on the week. The Nasdaq finished the week 8% lower, having lost 54 points, or 2.3%, to 2266 on Friday.

(The continued downturn came a day after the Dow lost 348 points, or 3.2%, to close at 10,520, its largest single-day fall since February 2009. The S&P 500 fell 38 points, or 3.2%, to 1128 on Thursday, while the Nasdaq lost 83 points, or 3.4%, to 2320.)

Both the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission are sifting through trading data leading up to the chaotic selloff and said conflicting trading rules across different markets may be one possible cause.

Friday's session was particularly rocky, with the Dow briefly venturing into positive territory but also losing as much as 279 points at one point to an intraday low of 10,241.

"The market is ignoring the cyclical power of the recovery," said Federated Chief Equity Market Strategist Phil Orlando, adding that the fundamentals of Friday morning's April jobs report were "off-the-charts phenomenal" but that markets were having a hard time getting past Europe.

"The fear is that since the (European Central Bank) has done nothing, the sovereign debt crisis in Greece will metastasize and jump the pond. There's a lot of concern about Europe going into the weekend with all these meetings coming up," Orlando said. "Anything can happen in the next couple of days, so no one wants to be long going into the weekend."

On Sunday, the International Monetary Fund's executive board comes together to act on the fund's portion of Greece's financial rescue package, according to Reuters.

Overseas, Asian markets reacted to Wall Street's staggering selloff. Hong Kong's Hang Seng lost 1.1%, while Japan's Nikkei shed 3.1%.

In Europe, German lawmakers approved their share of a financial rescue package for Greece, and the U.K. has a hung Parliament after the Conservative Party won the most seats in the national election but fell short of a majority.

The FTSE in London lost 2.6%, and the DAX in Frankfurt fell by 3.3%.

"Markets have had a tremendous run-up since 2009, so some correction was expected," said Andrew Neale, partner and head of wealth management at Fogel Neale Partners. "But corrections usually take place over weeks or months -- not 30 minutes! That's very frightening for investors. People don't like to see so much volatility," "I think there's a high probability that that we could go a little lower and that volatility will continue until we find a level that people are comfortable with."

The Economy

The Labor Department said the U.S. economy added 290,000 jobs in April in its monthly nonfarm payrolls report, which surpassed economists' projections for an additional 187,000 jobs.

Company News

Friday's declines were broad-based but led by the technology sector with Hewlett-Packard ( HPQ) and Cisco Systems ( CSCO) among the Dow's biggest laggards, after American Express ( AXP).

Topping the Dow, which saw heavy volume of 428 million shares compared with an average of 200 million, were Kraft Foods ( KFT), Coca-Cola ( KO) and Verizon Communications ( VZ).

Shares of General Growth Properties ( GGP) lost more than 11% on the session after Simon Property Group ( SPG) dropped its bid to acquire the ailing REIT company.

Goldman Sachs ( GS) was one of the few stocks within the financial sector to trade in positive territory as CEO Lloyd Blankfein said he will not step down, at the company's annual shareholder meeting. The stock finished 0.5% higher at $142.99.

American International Group ( AIG) swung to a profit in the first quarter with adjusted earnings of $1.21 a share. Analysts had been looking for a profit of 47 cents a share. Shares gained 5.3%, to $38.70.

Information-technology firm CGI ( GIB) agreed to buy Stanley ( SXE) for $1.07 billion in a cash tender offer. Shares finished down by 1% and up by 26.9%, respectively.

HSBC ( HBC) said its U.S. business reported pretax profits for the first time since the financial crisis hit in 2007, in what HSBC deemed a "very good" quarter. Shares closed up by 0.2%, at $46.78.

Commodities and the Dollar

Crude oil for June delivery shed $2 to settle at $75.11 a barrel.

Elsewhere in commodity markets, the June gold contract lost $13.10, settling at $1,210.40 an ounce.

The dollar was trading lower against a basket of currencies, with the dollar index down by 0.5%.


The benchmark 10-year Treasury weakened 7/32, raising the yield to 3.429%.

The two-year note declined 2/32, raising the yield to 0.820%. The 30-year bond fell 1 8/32, lifting the yield to 4.277%.

--Written by Melinda Peer in New York.

More from Markets

GE Confirms $11.1 Billion Transportation Merger With Wabtec

GE Confirms $11.1 Billion Transportation Merger With Wabtec

Dow Trades Above 25,000 as U.S.-China Trade Tensions Thaw

Dow Trades Above 25,000 as U.S.-China Trade Tensions Thaw

Treasury Secretary Mnuchin: 'Take the Over' on U.S. GDP Topping 3% This Year

Treasury Secretary Mnuchin: 'Take the Over' on U.S. GDP Topping 3% This Year

Video: Why the Stock Market Is Discounting China Trade Fears for Now

Video: Why the Stock Market Is Discounting China Trade Fears for Now

Global Stocks Rally as US-China Trade War Thaws; Dow Could Test 25,000

Global Stocks Rally as US-China Trade War Thaws; Dow Could Test 25,000